Brent Read from The Australian has reported that the Wests Tigers and Melbourne Storm are in negotiations for a deal that would send superstar winger Josh Addo-Carr to Concord in exchange for Paul Momirvoski and one other player for the 2021 season.
Addo-Carr has made it known that he wants to make the move to Sydney next season for personal reasons and Momirvoski looked very good for the Storm in his round 7 debut against the Warriors on Friday.
What makes matters even more interesting is the future of boom Hooker Harry Grant who could potentially be free to evaluate his options for next year; so it makes a lot of sense for the Tigers and Storm to work out a trade that will benefit both teams.
Why a trade makes sense for the Tigers
There’s no two ways about it, if the Wests Tigers can acquire a star like Addo-Carr for 2021, they should be willing to play ball in order to add a superstar to their roster.
Although Momirvoski is a good player, the Tigers have a log jam in the Centre position with Moses Mbye, Tommy Talau and BJ Leilua all signed up long term to the club.
The Tigers also have development players like Reece Hoffman and Zac Cini joining the top 30 in the coming seasons. Mbye and Leilua are taking up big chunks of the Tigers salary cap and Tommy Talau has a lot of potential with a big future in the game so it can be argued that Momirvoski is no guarantee to start next season if he is to return as planned.
Addo-Carr is arguably the best winger in the NRL and would add speed and game-breaking ability to the team which has been missing in recent years since the departure of James Tedesco. Momirvoski and another player seems like a fair trade for a State of Origin star that will accelerate the Tigers rebuild.
With rumours that the Bulldogs are also going to aggressively chase Harry Grant if he opts out of his contract, a trade package with the Storm to secure Grant is even more important for the Tigers.
If the Tigers can secure Grant, the club has finally found the circuit breaking signing every team needs if they hope to transition from irrelevancy to premiership contention.
Why a trade makes sense for the Storm
Usually, a club should move heaven and earth to keep a player of Addo-Carr’s caliber but the Indigenous All-Star has made it clear he wants out of Melbourne for unselfish reasons.
The Storm run the risk of losing Addo-Carr for nothing when his contract eventually runs at the end of 2021 so it makes sense for the club to come to the table and make some sort of deal where they aren’t left empty-handed.
Paul Momirvoski is a high IQ player that connected very well with his Storm teammates on the weekend and has shown that he can be the missing link in the right-side attack that Melbourne have tried to replace since the departure of Will Chambers and Curtis Scott.
Momirvoski, however, has come out and stated that he has signed a two-year extension with the Tigers so any potential stay in Victoria would have to be agreed upon by Wests.
If the Tigers were to offer a replacement winger as well as Momirvoski in a trade, there’s no doubt that the Storm would benefit greatly from the deal.
The Storm also have a potential dilemma in the hooking position in regards to their 2021 roster. It’s a well-known rumor that Harry Grant can opt-out of his contract if Cameron Smith continues to play next season and even if Smith does retire, there’s no doubt that Brandan Smith isn’t going to be content sharing minutes with Grant at number 9.
Brandan Smith has gone on the record stating that the Storm have promised him the Hooker position once Cameron Smith has retired so an attempt by Melbourne to keep both stars could lead to a potentially problematic situation for all parties involved.
If the Storm were to deal Grant to the Tigers, however, they would acquire assets to strengthen their roster while being able to Keep Brandan Smith in the process.
Trade Package number 1
The Tigers receive Josh Addo-Carr and the Storm receive Paul Momirvoski/ Kane Bradley
This trade package makes a lot of sense for both teams. The Tigers acquire a super star in Josh Addo-Carr and the Storm receives some much needed outside back depth.
I’m a really big fan of Kane Bradley and thought he outperformed Jason Saab in the Magpies victory over the Dragons in round 1 of the NSW Cup before the season was suspended.
Bradley is a tall athletic winger who’s very strong under the high ball and can start sets up strongly for a team. I’ve been surprised that Bradley hasn’t been seen in any of the Tigers 21 player squads, especially with the departure of Corey Thompson to the Titans and the injury to Robert Jennings.
There’s no doubt that Bradley would thrive in the Melbourne system as a replacement for Addo-Carr.
Trade Package number 2
The Tigers receive Josh Addo-Carr and the Storm receive Paul Momirvoski/ Zane Musgrove
With the Melbourne Storm losing Tino Faasuamaleaui to the Titans for the 2021 season, the Storm need to find a replacement for their middle forwards rotation.
There’s no doubt that Musgrove has the talent to become a quality Prop in the competition and would add a lot to the Storm pack.
The former South Sydney Rabbitoh adds plenty of aggression and energy when he’s on the field and is only going to get better with more experience under his belt. Musgrove’s game would mix well with the likes of Jessie Bromwich, Christian Welch and Nelson Asofa-Solomona as at his best, the Samoan international can play a role very similar to that of Jared Hargreaves.
Although Musgrove would be a big loss for the Tigers, the arrival of Stefano Utoikamanu in 2021 means that the club is looking strong in terms of youthful front row depth.
Trade Package number 3
The Tigers receive Josh Addo-Carr/ Harry Grant and the Storm receive Paul Momirvoski/ Kane Bradley and Jake Simpkin
This one is really tough because I am a huge fan of Jake Simpkin and firmly believe that he will be a star of the future.
The problem for the Tigers is that Simpkin is young and isn’t quite ready yet to become an 80 minute starting Hooker in the NRL whereas Grant is ready to a lead a team now.
The Tigers need to do everything they can to secure Grant because he can be the club’s Hooker for the next ten years and has only shown a small sample size of what he is capable of in 2020.
On the other hand, the storm receives depth to their backs and forwards while also acquiring a young gun with all the potential in the world that they can mold going forward as insurance if Brandan Smith doesn’t work out at Hooker.
It’s a tough decision for the Tigers but one that would add two young superstars to Concord.
Image: Melbourne Storm